England’s decision to overlook Liverpool sensation Trent Alexander-Arnold for both of their Euro 2020 qualifiers left Noel Whelan “stunned”.
Speaking exclusively to Football Insider, the BBC pundit and ex-Leeds United and Coventry City player said he “can’t believe” that Kieran Trippier was preferred to the Premier League star for both matches.
England thrashed Bulgaria 6-0 last night in a qualifier overshadowed by racism three days after losing 2-1 to the Czech Republic in their first qualifier defeat in 10 years.
Alexander-Arnold was an unused substitute for both matches as Atletico Madrid’s Trippier got the nod to start ahead of him.
“I can’t believe it,” Whelan told Football Insider. “Kieran Trippier is a fine right-back and is playing regularly at a big club but Alexander-Arnold is on a different level. He’s one of the best in the world.
“He is an exceptional talent, an astonishing player. He is young and makes mistakes, but he is fearless. That is a great quality for someone so young playing at such a high level.
“He would be first on the team sheet, for me. I’m stunned he’s on the bench.
“The Premier League is also a tougher league than La Liga and he is better than Trippier. You have to look at the fact he is starting every game for the European champions who have won every match this season.”
Alexander-Arnold has been a mainstay of the Liverpool side that have flown out of the starting blocks this season.
He has started all 10 of their Premier League and Champions League matches in his attacking right-back role.